Palestinians Being 'collectively Punished' For Hamas

Palestinians are being collectively punished for Hamas' "barbarism", Labor minister Ed Husic says.

Date: 19-10-2023 01:00

Palestinians Being 'collectively Punished' For Hamas

Palestinians are paying the price for Hamas’ “barbarism” and have been subjected to dehumanising language, Labor MP Ed Husic says.

The industry and science minister said Australia needed to acknowledge the human impact on Palestinians after Hamas fighters killed 1400 people in Israel in a rampage on October 7.

Israel has vowed to annihilate the Hamas movement in reprisal for the Islamic terror group’s attack.

“I feel very strongly that Palestinians are being collectively punished here for Hamas’ barbarism,” Mr Husic told ABC’s RN on Thursday.

“I really do feel that there is an obligation on governments, particularly the Israeli government to, as we have said, follow the rules of international law and to observe in particular, that innocence should be protected.”

Mr Husic said Palestinians had been dehumanised.

“I’ve heard some pretty strong language references to Palestinians as human animals which dehumanises Palestinians,” he said.

“It’s just wrong and references to collateral damage, that’s wrong.”

Mr Husic said he was concerned a two-state solution wouldn’t eventuate in the Middle East when the current violence finally ended.

Palestinians were living under occupation, he said.

About 200 Australians and their family members are back in the country after leaving Israel and arriving on a government-assisted flight.

A Qantas flight landed in Sydney on Wednesday evening with 126 Australians and their immediate family – another 43 passengers – completing onward travel for those who departed from Tel Aviv in recent days.

The plane also carried 65 citizens of the Solomon Islands and 18 from Vanuatu.

Foreign Minister Penny Wong has warned Australians to leave Israel and take any opportunity possible as the situation remains “highly challenging and rapidly changing”.

Officials say more than 1500 Australians registered with the Department of Foreign Affairs have left Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.

About 1200 Australians are in contact with the government and are receiving updates about returning home amid the conflict in the Middle East.

A Qatar Airways flight from Dubai carrying 222 people including 164 Australians landed in Sydney on Tuesday evening.

The government is also working to support Australians to leave the West Bank as it liaises with international partners to arrange transport to Jordan.

The safety of the 46 Australians in Gaza remains unknown after a barrage of Israeli missiles hit the territory, strikes Israeli authorities say are in response to Hamas attacks.

Hundreds were also killed in a Gaza hospital blast, which Hamas has blamed on Israel.

Israel countered that it was caused by a rocket misfire from Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad.

Israel’s blockade of water, food and fuel is also making the situation in Gaza dire as hospitals warn of a worsening humanitarian crisis when emergency generators run out of fuel and cut electricity.


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